Set in the beautiful countries of Switzerland and England, Caroline Bishop’s The Other Daughter tells the stories of Sylvia, a mother, and her daughter, Jess, as they navigate difficulties in their lives. For Sylvia, dealing with sexism in the workplace in 1976 England is bad enough. But becoming pregnant has only complicated her plans of being taken seriously as a journalist. Meanwhile, in 2016, Jess is divorced, dealing with a career set-back and, is in Switzerland trying to find out the mysterious circumstances surrounding her birth.
I really enjoyed reading this book because, the plot wasn’t too predictable and cliché. Bishop is so descriptive it’s easy to picture everything that’s going on in the novel. I also loved how she touched on the women’s movement in Switzerland. It was really interesting to find out how “behind” the Swiss were in equality issues. It’s also a topic relevant for today as there is so much work still to be done for women to be equal to our male counterpart, worldwide.
Bishop also focuses on identity, which I enjoyed because, who doesn’t question who they are? Sylvia embodies the career-focused woman who wants to break barriers and, wants to be respected by her male colleagues. On the other hand, Jess doesn’t know who she is but is definitely a resilient woman. I find that both women are relatable which makes reading any book more enjoyable.
This novel is compelling, heartbreaking and heartwarming. You won’t want to put it down until the very last page.
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GBC Reader Reviews